The right to public participation in decision-making is specifically recognized in the context of environmental issues, including climate change. For example, the Rio Declaration, Agenda 21, and the Aarhus Convention affirm that the best environmental decisions are made when civil society participates.
The UNFCCC provides that Parties must promote and facilitate public participation in addressing climate change and its effects and developing adequate responses. It further states that Parties must encourage the widest participation in the negotiation process, and that access and participation of observers in the process promotes transparency in this increasingly complex, universal problem. Meaningful and effective public participation in relevant negotiating processes helps to promote wide public support and ensure the legitimacy of financial institutions and their policies.